Featured Article

Crapemyrtle – Pruning

One of the most confounding arguments I face is whether and how to prune crapemyrtles. They are mercilessly “murdered” by unaware landscapers and homeowners each winter… yet they still bloom in summer. Some people even believe a crapemyrtle won’t bloom unless it is severely pruned. Crapemyrtles do not HAVE TO...

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Fescue Planting – 1-2-3

September – October is the BEST time to plant a fescue lawn. I have tips on planting a new lawn or an existing lawn, whether with seed or sod. I also cover what kind of fescue is best. It is not as important as you think it is, but everyone’s...

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Venomous (Poisonous) Caterpillars – Photos

Several kinds of venomous caterpillars are commonly seen in late summer – early fall. They are usually inconspicuous, so when one is encountered it’s “OUCH – what stung me???!!“. Below are photos of those you might find in the Southeast. Because they are so uncommon and because they feed on...

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Turfgrasses (Lawn Grass) – Identifying

Unlike trees, which have distinctive leaves, or blooming plants, which have distinctive flowers, turfgrass identification is much more difficult for the amateur . There are five major lawn grasses grown in Georgia. Following are characteristics that will help you distinguish them: TALL FESCUE is green throughout the year but tends...

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Leyland Cypress – Limited Lifespan

Nothing lives forever. Whether plant or animal, living things seem to have typical life spans: some measured in centuries and some in days. Leyland cypress is enormously popular in Southern landscapes. It’s been planted by the millions.  Even so, it is not particularly suited for heat and drought. Both lead...

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  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES
  • Removing Pines – Hardwood

    Q: We’re having all of the pine trees removed from our lot. We have beautiful red and white oaks that do not have enough room amongst all the pines. Someone told me that removing the pines would kill my hardwoods...

    READ MORE

  • Aucuba shrubs – Mosquitoes

    Q: I have heard that aucuba shrubs attract mosquitos. Is this true? A: Mosquito specialist Elmer Gray is also known as Elmer the Entomologist to Clarke county school children. He says mosquito resting places vary between seasons and among species...

    READ MORE

  • Ryegrass – Garden soil

    Q: I have a vegetable garden area which I’ve improved by adding compost, dead grass and leaves every fall and spring. This fall I sowed ryegrass and it is now five inches tall. How tall should it grow before I...

    READ MORE

  • Cat’s Claw Vine – Identification

    Q: We found this vine in Lake Charles, Louisiana over the 2009 Easter holidays. The resident at the home and the most popular garden nursery in the city could not identify it. So we brought it back to Marietta ....

    READ MORE

  • Tomato – Glyphosate (Roundup) Damage

    Q: My Better Boys are showing this yellow pattern on the leaves. These two plants seem healthy but the new growth shows light green. A: I think someone (I name no names!) got too close to the tomatoes with their...

    READ MORE

  • Crapemyrtle – Losing Branches

    Q: Can you tell me what is wrong with this crepe myrtle? It is losing its branches. A: One of the results of chopping off the top of a crapemyrtle in winter is lots of lush growth the following spring....

    READ MORE

  • Colonial Trees – Eagle project

    Q: My nephew’s Eagle Scout project is to find trees with historical significance during the colonial period. He is having difficulty finding information on these trees in Georgia. A: Since Georgia had few cities in colonial times, few trees from...

    READ MORE

  • Heater malfunction – Plant cleaning

    Q: We had a kerosene heater malfunction in our greenhouse. Soot covers the plants. What is the safest way to clean them? A: I’d use soap (not a detergent) on your plant leaves. Soaps include Ivory bar soap and castille...

    READ MORE

  • Boric Acid – Gardenias

    Q: My husband put several tablespoonfuls of boric acid on my crown of thorns and a gardenia, trying to kill ants. Now these two houseplants are suffering greatly. Is there anything I can do to rescue them? A: Boron is...

    READ MORE

  • Inkberry plants – Purchase

    Q: Where can I purchase male and female inkberry plants? A: Inkberry, Ilex glabra, is a great native holly. Unlike many other hollies, its berries are black. Truthfully, I don’t think there is much bang for the buck from this...

    READ MORE

  • Southern Blight – On Creeping Jenny

    Q: My creeping Jenny is dying before my eyes. I see these tiny little brown beads on the ground and on the leaves. What is this and what can I use to stop it? A: Your creeping Jenny has Southern...

    READ MORE

  • Fall leaves – Natural areas and islands

    Q: Tell me about keeping fall leaves in natural areas and islands from year to year. It is my opinion that the leaves enrich the soil, provide a good mulch and look almost as good as pine straw. Others argue...

    READ MORE

  • Chinda doll – Growth

    Q: I have a four-foot tall China Doll plant. It flourished outside but indoors the leaves are yellow and falling off. A: Although China Doll plant, Radermachera sinica, is sold as a house plant, it can eventually grow to 30...

    READ MORE

  • Deer invasion – Spring leaves

    Q: We love the mountains and woods but we are having a constant problem with deer. They have severely eaten my ‘Nellie R. Stevens’ holly and ligustrums, both of which we were told “Deer do not eat!”. How do I...

    READ MORE

  • Woodpecker – Prevention

    Q: A small woodpecker-type bird is pecking large holes in the synthetic stucco facade of our chimney. What can we do to prevent this? A: Woodpecker “drumming” is common at this time of year. They seem to be making noise...

    READ MORE

  • Camellia – Buds Won’t Open

    Q: Now in December, I have a camellia bush loaded with buds that won’t open. They have looked like they want to open for the last two months. It gets nice filtered sun for several hours a day. A: I...

    READ MORE

  • Badminton – Grass type

    Q: I am putting a badminton court in my backyard. We play serious badminton four times a week for a couple of hours. Is there a grass that can stand that kind of activity? The site receives six hours of...

    READ MORE

  • Camellias – Feeding

    Q: What is the best time to feed camellias? I have several that have been planted for more than fifteen years. A: Camellias need nutrients when their growth starts in early April. You can use granular synthetic fertilizers then; rainfall...

    READ MORE

  • Weeds – Identification with Pictures

    Weed control in the landscape is a tough business. You have to know a lot about the weed in question just to get started! As in most situations, a picture is worth a thousand words. Go through the sites below,...

    READ MORE

  • Diagnosing (Identifying) Holes in the Yard

    Sometimes many heads are better than one when it comes to solving a problem. Wade Hutcheson, my Extension colleague in Spalding county, gets plenty of calls from the citizens of his area asking his help in identifying various holes in...

    READ MORE

  • Brown Patch – Diagnosing

    You have brown patches of dead grass in your lawn. Is it the common lawn disease ‘brown patch’ or is it something else? The answer is important: if it is brown patch you probably need to spray with a fungicide....

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Timing Spring Pre-emergent Herbicide Application

    One of the sourest phrases that can be directed at a child or adult is “I told you so!” Whether you touch a hot match, leave tools out in the rain, or lift cinder blocks all afternoon, someone is usually...

    READ MORE

  • Bermuda – Weed Control

    BASIC INFORMATION: Weed Identification Pictures General Turf and Weed Info Lawn Care Calendars THREE METHODS There are three primary methods of controlling weeds. Any one method, when used alone, will not usually control all of your weeds. To consistently control...

    READ MORE

  • St. Augustine Grass Seed – Where to Buy

    Q: Please tell me where I can buy St. Augustine grass seeds. Our lawn has some now and we like it a lot, but we’re having trouble finding seeds. A: You can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The plant is very...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Growing in Shade

    OK. I admit it. I have given up. I came to the conclusion that grass just would not grow in the corner of my lawn near the ornamental cherry trees. The shade there is so dense that my grass, no...

    READ MORE

  • Lawn – Leveling

    A new home in my neighborhood had bermudagrass sod planted in March. By May, one area was a perfect checkerboard of straight lines, composed of weedy plants, surrounding the individual squares of sod. Evidently the sod installers were in such...

    READ MORE

  • Bermuda Grass – Disease – Brown Patch

    Brown patch is most prevalent on bermudagrass which has been heavily fertilized when night temperatures are above 68 degrees and day temperature are above 80 degrees. Dead patches of grass may start small but can grow and join together to...

    READ MORE

  • Crapemyrtle – Pruning

    One of the most confounding arguments I face is whether and how to prune crapemyrtles. They are mercilessly “murdered” by unaware landscapers and homeowners each winter… yet they still bloom in summer. Some people even believe a crapemyrtle won’t bloom...

    READ MORE

  • RECENT ARTICLES
  • POPULAR ARTICLES

Removing Pines – Hardwood

Q: We’re having all of the pine trees removed from our lot. We have beautiful red and white oaks that do not have enough room amongst all the pines. Someone told me that removing the pines would kill my hardwoods...

READ MORE

Aucuba shrubs – Mosquitoes

Q: I have heard that aucuba shrubs attract mosquitos. Is this true? A: Mosquito specialist Elmer Gray is also known as Elmer the Entomologist to Clarke county school children. He says mosquito resting places vary between seasons and among species...

READ MORE

Ryegrass – Garden soil

Q: I have a vegetable garden area which I’ve improved by adding compost, dead grass and leaves every fall and spring. This fall I sowed ryegrass and it is now five inches tall. How tall should it grow before I...

READ MORE

Cat’s Claw Vine – Identification

Q: We found this vine in Lake Charles, Louisiana over the 2009 Easter holidays. The resident at the home and the most popular garden nursery in the city could not identify it. So we brought it back to Marietta ....

READ MORE

Tomato – Glyphosate (Roundup) Damage

Q: My Better Boys are showing this yellow pattern on the leaves. These two plants seem healthy but the new growth shows light green. A: I think someone (I name no names!) got too close to the tomatoes with their...

READ MORE

Crapemyrtle – Losing Branches

Q: Can you tell me what is wrong with this crepe myrtle? It is losing its branches. A: One of the results of chopping off the top of a crapemyrtle in winter is lots of lush growth the following spring....

READ MORE

Colonial Trees – Eagle project

Q: My nephew’s Eagle Scout project is to find trees with historical significance during the colonial period. He is having difficulty finding information on these trees in Georgia. A: Since Georgia had few cities in colonial times, few trees from...

READ MORE

Heater malfunction – Plant cleaning

Q: We had a kerosene heater malfunction in our greenhouse. Soot covers the plants. What is the safest way to clean them? A: I’d use soap (not a detergent) on your plant leaves. Soaps include Ivory bar soap and castille...

READ MORE

Boric Acid – Gardenias

Q: My husband put several tablespoonfuls of boric acid on my crown of thorns and a gardenia, trying to kill ants. Now these two houseplants are suffering greatly. Is there anything I can do to rescue them? A: Boron is...

READ MORE

Inkberry plants – Purchase

Q: Where can I purchase male and female inkberry plants? A: Inkberry, Ilex glabra, is a great native holly. Unlike many other hollies, its berries are black. Truthfully, I don’t think there is much bang for the buck from this...

READ MORE

Southern Blight – On Creeping Jenny

Q: My creeping Jenny is dying before my eyes. I see these tiny little brown beads on the ground and on the leaves. What is this and what can I use to stop it? A: Your creeping Jenny has Southern...

READ MORE

Fall leaves – Natural areas and islands

Q: Tell me about keeping fall leaves in natural areas and islands from year to year. It is my opinion that the leaves enrich the soil, provide a good mulch and look almost as good as pine straw. Others argue...

READ MORE

Chinda doll – Growth

Q: I have a four-foot tall China Doll plant. It flourished outside but indoors the leaves are yellow and falling off. A: Although China Doll plant, Radermachera sinica, is sold as a house plant, it can eventually grow to 30...

READ MORE

Deer invasion – Spring leaves

Q: We love the mountains and woods but we are having a constant problem with deer. They have severely eaten my ‘Nellie R. Stevens’ holly and ligustrums, both of which we were told “Deer do not eat!”. How do I...

READ MORE

Woodpecker – Prevention

Q: A small woodpecker-type bird is pecking large holes in the synthetic stucco facade of our chimney. What can we do to prevent this? A: Woodpecker “drumming” is common at this time of year. They seem to be making noise...

READ MORE

Camellia – Buds Won’t Open

Q: Now in December, I have a camellia bush loaded with buds that won’t open. They have looked like they want to open for the last two months. It gets nice filtered sun for several hours a day. A: I...

READ MORE

Badminton – Grass type

Q: I am putting a badminton court in my backyard. We play serious badminton four times a week for a couple of hours. Is there a grass that can stand that kind of activity? The site receives six hours of...

READ MORE

Camellias – Feeding

Q: What is the best time to feed camellias? I have several that have been planted for more than fifteen years. A: Camellias need nutrients when their growth starts in early April. You can use granular synthetic fertilizers then; rainfall...

READ MORE

Weeds – Identification with Pictures

Weed control in the landscape is a tough business. You have to know a lot about the weed in question just to get started! As in most situations, a picture is worth a thousand words. Go through the sites below,...

READ MORE

Diagnosing (Identifying) Holes in the Yard

Sometimes many heads are better than one when it comes to solving a problem. Wade Hutcheson, my Extension colleague in Spalding county, gets plenty of calls from the citizens of his area asking his help in identifying various holes in...

READ MORE

Brown Patch – Diagnosing

You have brown patches of dead grass in your lawn. Is it the common lawn disease ‘brown patch’ or is it something else? The answer is important: if it is brown patch you probably need to spray with a fungicide....

READ MORE

Lawn – Timing Spring Pre-emergent Herbicide Application

One of the sourest phrases that can be directed at a child or adult is “I told you so!” Whether you touch a hot match, leave tools out in the rain, or lift cinder blocks all afternoon, someone is usually...

READ MORE

Bermuda – Weed Control

BASIC INFORMATION: Weed Identification Pictures General Turf and Weed Info Lawn Care Calendars THREE METHODS There are three primary methods of controlling weeds. Any one method, when used alone, will not usually control all of your weeds. To consistently control...

READ MORE

St. Augustine Grass Seed – Where to Buy

Q: Please tell me where I can buy St. Augustine grass seeds. Our lawn has some now and we like it a lot, but we’re having trouble finding seeds. A: You can’t buy St. Augustinegrass seed. The plant is very...

READ MORE

Lawn – Growing in Shade

OK. I admit it. I have given up. I came to the conclusion that grass just would not grow in the corner of my lawn near the ornamental cherry trees. The shade there is so dense that my grass, no...

READ MORE

Lawn – Leveling

A new home in my neighborhood had bermudagrass sod planted in March. By May, one area was a perfect checkerboard of straight lines, composed of weedy plants, surrounding the individual squares of sod. Evidently the sod installers were in such...

READ MORE

Bermuda Grass – Disease – Brown Patch

Brown patch is most prevalent on bermudagrass which has been heavily fertilized when night temperatures are above 68 degrees and day temperature are above 80 degrees. Dead patches of grass may start small but can grow and join together to...

READ MORE

Crapemyrtle – Pruning

One of the most confounding arguments I face is whether and how to prune crapemyrtles. They are mercilessly “murdered” by unaware landscapers and homeowners each winter… yet they still bloom in summer. Some people even believe a crapemyrtle won’t bloom...

READ MORE